Deborah Penny

11th August 2022

2022 Shortlisted Nominee

Lifetime Achiever Award


Deborah Penny was the first transgender soldier in a theatre of operations (Afghanistan) and the first transgender Ammunition Technician and Explosive Ordnance Disposal Operator. A role model and engaging speaker, Deborah joined the army in September 1982 and has served for nearly 40 years in various roles. Throughout her career she has deployed overseas to Northern Ireland, Iraq and Afghanistan, and in the UK in response to BREXIT and COVID-19. Currently holding the post of Warrant Officer in the Army Diversity Engagement Team, she actively delivers presentations to external audiences from schools, communities and businesses to break down barriers and dispel myths about being Trans, LGBTQ+ and a woman in today's army. Additionally, she has pioneered diversity training within the army to help create a culture of change. Deborah has a portrait of herself in the National Portrait gallery and National Army Museum.